New Gibson Line Up - Finally What Players Want?

AngusWolfe

Likes red things.
#42
a couple of things I want to throw in on the headstock debate, the PRS SE and S2 range have a completely different body carve than the core range, so it's not like they're identical in looks. That, in fact, has been one of the big reasons I have not purchased a PRS SE.

Anyone who would know what Gibson and Epiphone where would be able to read the logo on the headstock anyway, so the shape is irrelevant to people's perception of the guitar. People still read the Squier logo and know what it means, even if the headstocks are the same. The majority of people (the ones who don't know guitars) won't know the difference and won't care.

I've also never GAS'ed over a US made Fender because I can get an identical looking guitar from Mexico. That obviously hasn't hurt their sales, but I understand the mindset in wanting to keep the Gibson line exclusive and top notch.
 

Lonestar

SC Relics Guitars
#43
But they also suffered from people who want to complain. About anything.
This is the world we live in.

But maybe an interesting question. So this is the 2019 lineup.. for 20% under their list price I can go to a luthier.. get any body I want. With any design.. any pickup. With a copy of the neck of my strat because I love it..
Why would I buy a Gibson?
Because.... it isn’t a Gibson. It’s the brand that has been responsible for the countless sounds on the biggest selling albums of all time. It’s the brand that at least one of your guitar hero’s is posing with in the album sleeve. It’s the brand that has given us a wide array of classic designs which every luthier around the world has made a copy of at some stage. It’s the brand you’ll see on stage at every gig you go to.

So, my question is.... why wouldn’t you buy a Gibson?
 

mirage2101

Well-Known Member
#44
@Felix and @Lonestar
I am of course playing devils advocate a bit. And maybe wondering out loud what Gibson as a company should be going for.

My first guitar was a strat and Gilmour is one of my great inspirations. I have never had that same feeling about another guitar. So while I’d happily buy a fender in that price range for me Gibson has to win it purely based on quality.
And they’re great guitars, I owned a les Paul standard for years and loved it.

That said there are other guitars of comparable quality and price. And sure people are buying Gibson for the brand and what it is. But for Gibson as a brand it might be good to have more reasons than just that as selling point.
Or maybe just making quality guitars that say Gibson is enough.

Should Gibson have a standard and classic line that doesn’t change every year and do a series of modern and specials yearly? I think someone said they did that in the 2000s?
Why revamp your entire lineup yearly?
 

Chu

Well-Known Member
#45
But maybe an interesting question. So this is the 2019 lineup.. for 20% under their list price I can go to a luthier.. get any body I want. With any design.. any pickup. With a copy of the neck of my strat because I love it..
Why would I buy a Gibson?
Can you genuinely get a flamed, carved top singlecut akin to a LP from a luthier for less than the real deal?

Resale value for a custom guitar is terrible. It's priceless but worthless. You can't try it before you buy it. It's exactly what you want now but in two years time you want something else. It's not a 'real' Gibson. People assume it's a cheaper copy. It is a copy. You realise that handmade guitars come with flaws. If it gets stolen or destroyed by fire insurance may be only pay fair market value. It might be that i can't improve a guitar designed by guitar designers.

Not saying these are all valid but they might add up.

heard several commentators mention an off shore Gibson with a proper Gibson headstock. previously this would be seen as diluting the core USA brand, but if Fender (across their multiple brands) and PRS can do it, why not Gibson?
PRS have the shape but not the logo. No SE has ever had the proper Paul Reed Smith signature logo, instead just PRS. And never a proper top carve. I think they know it would rattle the validity of the core range if they did.
 

mirage2101

Well-Known Member
#46
Can you genuinely get a flamed, carved top singlecut akin to a LP from a luthier for less than the real deal?
That's up for debate and definition ofcourse. The guy I'm working with now is asking less then 2000 euro for a les paul type body completely to my spec. Gibson lists price is what 2400 euro?
So the question is does the custom one have the same specs and would you actually pay list for the gibson. Honestly I think they're for different people.

Resale value for a custom guitar is terrible. It's priceless but worthless. You can't try it before you buy it. It's exactly what you want now but in two years time you want something else. It's not a 'real' Gibson. People assume it's a cheaper copy. It is a copy. You realise that handmade guitars come with flaws. If it gets stolen or destroyed by fire insurance may be only pay fair market value. It might be that i can't improve a guitar designed by guitar designers.

Not saying these are all valid but they might add up.
We had a good talk in the thread about custom vs vintage and these are valid points. Especially if you want to make a Gibson copy. Luckily I don't want a gibson copy :) But for the people who do they might well be better off buying a Gibson.

In the end it's down to do you want a Gibson? Or do you want a good guitar with a certain tone? If the second is the case, PRS, a luthier or a lot of other brands would be stiff competition for Gibson. I haven't played a comparable PRS to the standard line but in the 1000 euro range I wasn't impressed with Gibson. PRS was a lot better.
If you have emotional attachment to Gibson? Go for it. They're great guitars and not as bad or overpriced as people make them out to be. If you don't? play them all and get what suits you.

In context of the discussion though. Is that enough for Gibson to float on as a brand? Or should they do more?
 

johnniegoat

Stop, don’t, come back.
#47
PRS have the shape but not the logo. No SE has ever had the proper Paul Reed Smith signature logo, instead just PRS. And never a proper top carve. I think they know it would rattle the validity of the core range if they did.
absolutely - however, PRS give all the key aesthetic points to the SE range; in silhouette its a PRS. an Epiphone in the same light is clearly far removed from a gibson

don't get me wrong - PRS make clear differentiation between their value tiers. HP42 pointed out the most mealymouthed one; the S2 range has plastic inlays. given its pretty much the same work to install, the saving v's pieces of abalone or clay dots, etc, is pennies
 

Chu

Well-Known Member
#48
That's up for debate and definition ofcourse. The guy I'm working with now is asking less then 2000 euro for a les paul type body completely to my spec. Gibson lists price is what 2400 euro?
So the question is does the custom one have the same specs and would you actually pay list for the gibson. Honestly I think they're for different people.



We had a good talk in the thread about custom vs vintage and these are valid points. Especially if you want to make a Gibson copy. Luckily I don't want a gibson copy :) But for the people who do they might well be better off buying a Gibson.

In the end it's down to do you want a Gibson? Or do you want a good guitar with a certain tone? If the second is the case, PRS, a luthier or a lot of other brands would be stiff competition for Gibson. I haven't played a comparable PRS to the standard line but in the 1000 euro range I wasn't impressed with Gibson. PRS was a lot better.
If you have emotional attachment to Gibson? Go for it. They're great guitars and not as bad or overpriced as people make them out to be. If you don't? play them all and get what suits you.

In context of the discussion though. Is that enough for Gibson to float on as a brand? Or should they do more?
My current least favourite guitar i own is a PRS SE 277. Great guitar but with one feature that prevents complete satisfaction. I sought long and hard for a solution, in a market saturated with metalz extended scale guitars before deciding to go bespoke, with a custom made baritone guitar.

Having decided all the details, I realised that getting someone to build me a PRS style guitar is so far against my interests that I stopped. My brain directly relates the brand to the design, a Strat is a Fender Strat if you will. If I want a Les Paul, it is a Gibson that would be what I would consider. Should I want a singlecut, with three knobs, a humbucker, a p90 and a Tele bridge, that's different but a Les Paul by someone else is of limited appeal. I recognise other's rights to think otherwise!
 

Tankman

Subtly not giving a F*ck
#49
Resale value for a custom guitar is terrible. It's priceless but worthless. You can't try it before you buy it. It's exactly what you want now but in two years time you want something else. It's not a 'real' Gibson. People assume it's a cheaper copy. It is a copy. You realise that handmade guitars come with flaws. If it gets stolen or destroyed by fire insurance may be only pay fair market value. It might be that i can't improve a guitar designed by guitar designers.
My 2 cents.
  • If during the buying process of a guitar you are already thinking of resale, then this is not the guitar for you. This again is my personal opinion, but I never understood why people are so worried about resale when buying a guitar. That's something to worry about when you actually decide to sell it.
  • If you go custom made, you are at a point usually where you know what you want and don't need to think about resale at all.
  • Not everybody wants something else every 2 years, or months or weeks or days. Some people stick to their guns.
  • One luthier is not the next. If the luthier puts his brand on the guitar and said brand is known by people, then resale is no problem. Such is the case with @mirage2101 's luthier. I know the luthier. He made 2 of my guitars. The guitar players in our area know him.
  • The flaws in a custom made guitar make it even more unique. An expensive Fender or Gibson is also not perfect.
  • If ANY guiatr gets stolen or burnt up, your insurance company is bound to screw you over. Save the receipt for the build. You should at least have a case then.
 

doctorpaul

Negative, Ghost Rider, the pattern is full.
Staff member
#50
This is the world we live in.



Because.... it isn’t a Gibson. It’s the brand that has been responsible for the countless sounds on the biggest selling albums of all time. It’s the brand that at least one of your guitar hero’s is posing with in the album sleeve. It’s the brand that has given us a wide array of classic designs which every luthier around the world has made a copy of at some stage. It’s the brand you’ll see on stage at every gig you go to.

So, my question is.... why wouldn’t you buy a Gibson?
Mate, that is possibly the most sensible thing I've ever heard you say.

Good to see Gibson a little more focussed. I've not tried the new stuff, and will not get one (despite my recent purges, the racks are still full), but hopefully the "being cool to throw shit at Gibson" trend will start to reduce.

On weight relief, I have two solid, one swiss-cheesed and a chambered. All play like nice Les Pauls, so bollocks. I say it doesn't matter a shit what goes on inside, provided that they sound good, play nicely and make you smile.
 

ScutMonkey

Well-Known Member
#51
I think (I’ll have to check) that Tronical had a contract with Gibson to put robot tuners on all their US models. When customers mainly rejected the idea, Gibson dropped them off their standard lines after 2015. I’m pretty sure Gibson paid Tronical millions of dollars to develop the tuners for Gibson, Tronical opened a counter suit in Germany to avoid having to explain where the original investment money went.
It's all very "he said, she said." Tronical claims Gibson didn't pay them. Gibson claims Tronical breached their non compete deal and started making their own guitars (which I've never seen) so they didn't have to pay them. So who knows what the heck happened.
 
#52
Also, Squires only recently being seen as an OK option??? Nope, when they were being done in the 80's they were built in Fender's Japan plant and were of such a high quality, they were giving the US guitars a run for their money (Fender changed ownership and were building their new US factory). Why do you think people go to such lengths to hunt down those 80's Japanese Squire's and are prepared to part with "Fender" money for them? My uncle who helped me in my early days, actually still has his left handed Japanese Squire and it's an awesome guitar that feels and sounds way more expensive than it was ever meant to be.
I started playing in ‘02. Ever since then until Classic Vibe the general consensus I got from people I came across, whether that be school, vacation and eventually on webfora, was that Squiers were poor man's, poor quality, however ignorant that may be.

The 80s JV and SQ series are a whole different niche market. You might recall I am the owner of a ‘82 JV Squier Telecaster from the export series. Effectively these are MiJ AVRi Fenders, albeit slapped Squier, as it's the first time the name was used. Fender came with Squier because they feared damaging the Fender name AFAIK. With the more widespread use of the web, the quality of these has become more well known and less niche, but in the 90s and the large part of the 00s these wouldn’t be looked at whatsoever in my view. It would be unfair to compare them to the ‘real’ Squiers made from late 80s, early 90s in China.
 
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ScutMonkey

Well-Known Member
#53
My 2 cents.
  • If during the buying process of a guitar you are already thinking of resale, then this is not the guitar for you. This again is my personal opinion, but I never understood why people are so worried about resale when buying a guitar. That's something to worry about when you actually decide to sell it.
Some people just know who they are and know they are going to sell the guitar down the line no matter how amazing it is. There are car people like this too. They lease instead of buy because they know they are going to want a new car every two years.
 

Tankman

Subtly not giving a F*ck
#56
Some people just know who they are and know they are going to sell the guitar down the line no matter how amazing it is. There are car people like this too. They lease instead of buy because they know they are going to want a new car every two years.
Exactly. They lease in stead of buy. In Guitar terms, they are not the ones going custom made. They know resale will be dificult. I still will never understand the whole resale mindset.
 

Lonestar

SC Relics Guitars
#58
@doctorpaul thanks!

My current mood sets me In this sort of mindset...

If I had say, £2k to spend on a Gibson or a LP shape (I’m actuallly not really a massive LP fan tbh) then I’d do the following...

A Gibson SG standard would possibly be top of the list at about £1200. Followed closely by adding another £800 to the pot and speaking to Neil at Ivison Guitars about a 59 Replica Junior. IF I wanted a traditional LP I’d be buying the Gibson Traditional (weight doesn’t bother me) or id speak to Darren at Daniels Guitars.

If my 335 or 339 urges returned I’d be off to Gibson land again but I must admit... I’m favouring Gretsch Penguins and the likes these days.
 

Chu

Well-Known Member
#59
Exactly. They lease in stead of buy. In Guitar terms, they are not the ones going custom made. They know resale will be dificult. I still will never understand the whole resale mindset.
As I mentioned in my original post about resale value, it's an accumulative factor, not a sole reason to avoid them. I've bought plenty of gear believing that it was the right thing to do, not caring about the future.

But circumstances and tastes change, I've bought stuff for a specific purpose only for things to change very soon and take a massive hit in resale. I've bought stuff believing it to be a forever piece but the unexpected occurs.

I could go custom replacing my baritone. I believe that I know exactly what I want. But i only use it for two songs with my band; what if we stop playing them? If I bought wisely I could trade the guitar for something great, for a nice used Strat for example, if not I'd keep it for a few years unplayed before letting it go for way less than I should. It's not foolish to consider that, even if you go ahead anyway.

As for calling flaws on a custom guitar something that makes it unique, well that is something I will never understand. Don't mistake me, i have never been that bothered by imperfections and flaws, but when Gibson do it, they get trashed. I will never consider that it is unacceptable from them but fine for a handmade custom instrument.

Before this comes across as me trying to prove that one shouldn't go custom, it isn't intended so. I was countering the point of 'why one would ever go Gibson instead of custom'. There are arguments each way with the best solution being 'get both'!
 
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#60
@doctorpaul thanks!

My current mood sets me In this sort of mindset...

If I had say, £2k to spend on a Gibson or a LP shape (I’m actuallly not really a massive LP fan tbh) then I’d do the following...

A Gibson SG standard would possibly be top of the list at about £1200. Followed closely by adding another £800 to the pot and speaking to Neil at Ivison Guitars about a 59 Replica Junior. IF I wanted a traditional LP I’d be buying the Gibson Traditional (weight doesn’t bother me) or id speak to Darren at Daniels Guitars.

If my 335 or 339 urges returned I’d be off to Gibson land again but I must admit... I’m favouring Gretsch Penguins and the likes these days.
Penguin is the LP-shape isn't it? The Falcon is more of the 335 semi-hollow box type.
 
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